Liverpool 'facing tier three lockdown' with pubs, bars and gyms expected to close

11 October 2020, 18:02 | Updated: 11 October 2020, 19:42

Liverpool is heading for a tier three lockdown, it is being reported
Liverpool is heading for a tier three lockdown, it is being reported. Picture: PA
Nick Hardinges

By Nick Hardinges

Liverpool is heading for a tier three lockdown - the strictest possible under England's proposed new three-tier system - and the measures could remain in place for six months, according to reports.

Local leaders have been in discussion with Prime Minister Boris Johnson and the government who are planning to place the city in the third tier of the system.

Casinos and bookmakers would also be closed under the restrictions, while restaurants, schools and universities would remain open.

City region leaders have reportedly spoken with the government about the measures and are asking to be free to review the situation on a monthly basis.

Downing Street has refused to comment on the update ahead of the prime minister making a statement in the Commons on Monday about England's new three-tier system.

Read more: New daily coronavirus cases dip slightly as 65 more UK deaths recorded

Read more: UK at Covid-19 'tipping point' similar to first wave, top scientist warns

The measures could be overturned by Mr Johnson, however city leaders have agreed that following the rise in coronavirus cases in the city, the most stringent measures should be introduced.

Under a tier three lockdown, it is expected the city will be given financial support for its local track and trace system and for enforcing the restrictions.

However, final discussions on funding for local government are ongoing and will likely be outlined by Mr Johnson on Monday.

Questions still remain over which businesses will be forced to shut in the region, with pubs serving "substantial food" expected to remain open.

Mayor of the Liverpool City Region Steve Rotherham confirmed he had been speaking with the government but said it had not provided him with evidence to support the decision to put Liverpool into tier three of the lockdown system.

He said: "No agreement has yet been reached with government and negotiations are ongoing.

"We have been clear that new restrictions must come with the financial support to protect jobs and businesses.

"A deal isn't a deal until it is agreed."

Read more: Manchester MPs write to PM in protest at plans for three-tier Covid rules

Read more: Boris Johnson to update Cabinet on new coronavirus measures

It comes after five Manchester MPs wrote to the UK leader to argue against his plans for a three-tier system - with Manchester also likely to be subjected to the strictest tier.

Lucy Powell MP, Jeff Smith MP, Mike Kane MP, Afzal Khan MP and Graham Stringer MP wrote to Mr Johnson and the Chancellor to object to the city being placed in ‘tier three’ saying blanket closures to hospitality and other proposed measures will not work to stop the spread of coronavirus.

Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham also said northern leaders are still in discussion with the government on more restrictions as he again criticised its response to the pandemic amid a growing north-south lockdown row.

On Sunday evening, the PM was said to be updating members of the Cabinet on the latest measures.

Meanwhile, the number of new daily coronavirus cases in the UK dipped slightly on Sunday after almost 13,000 more people tested positive for Covid-19 while the official death toll rose by 65.

The country's official coronavirus death toll now stands at 42,825, meaning Britain is still the worst-hit country in Europe and the fifth-worst in the world, and the total number of infections stands at 603,716.

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